The Walking Dead: Parenting problems in the apocalypse

Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC, The Walking Dead
Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC, The Walking Dead /

Parents have different parenting styles and children are all different. The apocalypse magnifies everything, including parenting choices and their effects on the The Walking Dead.

We’ve only seen a few parents on The Walking Dead. The words Mom and Dad have a huge impact. Just recently, Sam called for his Mom when he was afraid in the herd and Carl called for his dad when he was shot. Carol lost her daughter and told Lizzie not to call her mom when she slipped and said mom instead of ma’am.

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We didn’t see too much of Carol’s parenting style with Sophia. Sophia was a pretty obedient child. But Sophia died because of the walkers, through no fault of Carol. She was within Carol’s sight. Sophia panicked and ran off.

Carol tried to toughen up Lizzie and Mika. Lizzie had psychological issues that Carol couldn’t control and Mika loved Carol. Carol tried to toughen her up, but she wasn’t mean to her or neglectful.

Lori and Jessie are complete opposites and ironically get criticized for the opposite things. Lori was always criticized for not knowing where Carl was and that Carl wouldn’t stay in the house. People have said they’d have their eyes in their child at all times with zombie danger around.

Rick Grimes, Sam and Jessie Anderson, Carl - The Walking Dead, AMC
Rick Grimes, Sam and Jessie Anderson, Carl – The Walking Dead, AMC /

Jessie was criticized for letting Sam stay in the house and not preparing him for the walkers. That she made him wimpy. That he was a liability and would get people killed.

I’m not a parent, but I have nephews and a niece and I was a teacher of 14 and 15 year olds. It seems that parents would be protective of their children and want to do anything to keep them away from danger. I understand that means teaching them how to protect themselves, but in Alexandria they didn’t have a whole lot of time to do that.

Pete and Ed would have had similar parenting styles I would imagine. They were both abusers, selfish, neglectful. Sophia and Sam were gentle souls. Ron was resentful and powerless. He acted out to express his frustration. He would have likely grown up to repeat the cycle.

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Rick has had quite a few parenting choices to make along the way as well. He has had to talk Lori into letting Carl learn to shoot. He took away Carl’s gun when they were at the prison and started farming because he saw Carl getting cold. He gave him his gun back when Carol was teaching the children weapons as a gesture to show Carol and Carl that he was the Dad and he would make those decisions for his son.

He employed the help of others in the group to be friends and role models for Carl. He made sacrifices to let them stay in Alexandria so Carl and Judith could have some comforts, safety and stability. Rick talks to Carl and allows him to express himself.

It’s tough enough raising kids in the regular world. Parents make mistakes all the time. Their mistakes just don’t always have the potential for such dire or immediate consequences. The apocalypse is difficult for everyone. Parents and children have it very tough. Really anyone who has to think about someone else’s safety at the same time as their own.

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It’s another Catch 22. Having friends and family takes away the loneliness, helps you survive, and makes your life worth living, but makes the loss inevitable and heartbreaking.